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Staff Counselling Service

Page last updated: 09/08/2017

Counselling 
Counselling allows a person to talk about their problems and feelings in a confidential and safe environment. A counsellor is trained to listen in order to help people come to terms with any problems they are facing, with an ultimate aim of overcoming them.
How can counselling help?
Counselling can be useful for anyone who wants to explore the way they're thinking or feeling further, as well as anyone experiencing a problem or issue they are keen to resolve. People may choose to speak to a counsellor because they feel they cannot speak to family or friends about such personal issues, or they may simply wish to speak to a professional with an objective viewpoint. To find out more about counselling and the role of a Counsellor see the Counselling Factsheet.

What do we offer?
We provide a self-referral service offering short term confidential counselling up to 6 sessions per employee, each session is 50 minutes in duration. Our counselling sessions are conducted via face to face or telephone consultations.  See our Telephone Counselling guide for further information.  There are dedicated counselling rooms in Chelmsford, Colchester and Epping as well as a network of counsellors across Essex.  
Before commencing counselling we will complete a telephone assessment to ensure counselling is the right form of support required.
This assessment enables us to build a picture of the problems you wish to address and what you would like to achieve to ensure counselling is the right form of support required. 
The counsellor will ask certain questions about you and your life including:
·         Why you are seeking counselling support? 
·         Your personal history and current situation. 
·         Your current symptoms 
All our counsellors are registered accredited members, or working towards accreditation with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). Our experienced practitioners use a variety of theoretical models including Person  Centred,  Integrative, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Solution Focused Brief Therapy.
 

Who is counselling available to?

The Staff Counselling Service is  available to all Essex schools. If your school has a service level agreement with the Wellbeing Service, then school employees can automatically make a self-referral to be seen by a counsellor. If your school does not have a service level agreement in place, you can still access the service provided your employer completes a form to verify agreement to fund the counselling sessions.  To discuss charges please telephone 03330 135859 Option 2 or email Occupational.Health@essex.gov.uk for further details.
 

Is workplace counselling confidential? 
A fundamental principle of the counselling service is that it is confidential within the wellbeing service. However, there are exceptions where we may have a legal obligation to share information:
  • where the individual would be liable to civil or criminal court proceedings if the information was not disclosed
  • where the individual believes the client or third party is in serious danger e.g. child protection issues
Before you start counselling your counsellor will discuss the Confidentiality and Data Protection Policy with you.
 
Arranging a counselling session
To access our counselling service you can self-refer by calling our employee counselling support line on Tel: 03330 135859 Option 2 or alternatively complete the referral form and email it to us on counselling@essex.gov.uk.
 A member of our dedicated team will then provide you with a unique pin number and arrange for you to have a 30 minute telephone assessment with one of our qualified counsellors.  Please note the counselling phone line will not be answered by a counsellor and, therefore, no information regarding your reason for referral should be requested or shared at this time.
 
Support for line managers 
We recognise line managers may also require support as you have to manage difficult situations and support your team members through personal and organisational change.
We can offer a 50 minute session providing a confidential forum to help you explore the difficulties you are facing, helping you to think about how you can support your employees whilst fulfilling your role as a line manager.
 To find out more please call on Tel: 03330 135859 Option 2 or alternatively email us on counselling@essex.gov.uk.
 
For Further Information
Visit the About Counselling section for further information about the service and other useful resources.​​

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